Sat. Jul 13th, 2024

Mayor Bill de Blasio: Let me just open it up with a quick update – a couple of hours ago I spoke to the new mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, and really had a wonderful conversation. He’s a very impressive guy who won an outstanding victory – a huge vote of confidence in him by the people of London. As everyone knows, his opponent, unfortunately, attempted a very divisive campaign, and the people of London, I think, did something important for all people in democratic societies by standing up and choosing someone who represented their hopes, not their fears, had a great progressive vision for his city. He’s someone who’s focused on issues, as we have, of affordable housing, and fairness, and equity.

And I had the honor of meeting Mayor Khan when I was in Manchester, England at the Labour Party Conference two years ago. I thought at that point he was obviously an up and coming leader, and we had a great conversation about our shared values and the vision we had for our respective cities.

So, I just want to congratulate him publicly, and I think his election is a very, very positive sign for this world of the ability of people to make progress despite all the negativity and the divisiveness around us.

Now, there was a poignant moment in the conversation where he talked about Donald Trump, and the fact that, according to someone who’s obviously going to be the nominee of one of our major parties for President of the United States, the Mayor of London would not be allowed to come to this country. Now, Trump quickly said he would make an exception for one person – the Mayor of London, England – but Mayor Khan was quick to say that that just puts the lie to the whole approach that Trump has taken. We need to respect all people. We need to respect democratic values, and excluding people based on their faith is fundamentally un-American, and doesn’t conform with any vision of democracy.

And I just want to quote from him, because I think Mayor Khan said something very, very positive and very helpful. He said, “Trump’s ignorant view of Islam could make both our countries less safe. It risks alienating mainstream Muslims and London has proven him wrong.”

So, I really want to wish him the best of luck. I extended to Mayor Khan an invitation to come visit us here in New York, and told him that we were ready to work with him on a host of issues of common concern, and that all the officials of our government look forward to supporting his new administration in every way we can.


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